UTG LIST: The Essential Love Songs For Valentine’s Day

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Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, and on top of all that, it is about as ambiguous as a feeling can get. Since the dawn of time, droves of individuals have tried to put this warm fuzzy feeling into words, and despite varying results, it would seem that everyone can agree on two things:

First, the moment you fall in love–like, REAL love–you will know, regardless of your age, outlook, or past. Don’t ask me how it works; you just will.

Second, and more importantly, regardless of your definition, it will be the most amazing, awe-inspiring feeling you have ever experienced. Yes, once your eyes lock with that one person you were meant–nay–destined to be with, life itself will never be the same.

For this reason, the staff of UTG has put together a list of essential love songs for Valentine’s Day, the one day out of the year dedicated to the happily twitterpated. As an added bonus, we have gone to great lengths to nominate our lesser-known favorites, so it’s like falling in love for the first time every time you hit the play button (Eat your heart out, Hallmark).


Naysayers aside, most people take comfort in the belief that, somewhere out there, they have a soul mate; someone who is perfect for them, and will accept them as they are, despite their flaws and respective differences. This idea is so engrained in our culture that often the very notion drives many of us on a daily basis. “We Found Each Other in the Dark” by City and Colour beautifully addresses this search for our better half, and reminds us that no matter how long it takes to find that one person, they’re always worth the wait. — Kyle Florence, News & Review Writer


Passive-aggressively snarled in post-teen sophistication, “A Walk Through Hell” represents the most dashing of love affairs. Modern enough to melt the hearts of angsty souls from coast-to-coast, yet traditional enough to satisfy love long established, this song is hellishly adorable enough to warm the coldest of hearts. “A Walk Through Hell” is so solidified in ironic love that even those who are planning to spend their Friday evening alone can gush with endearment toward how undeniably clever Bemis and co were on this timeless love tune. — Matthew Leimkuehler, Music Editor


I’ve never once heard Drake’s original cut of “Hold On We’re Going Home” but after hearing this dark and sensual remix from Vancouver Sleep Clinic and GXNXVS, I don’t think I need to.

I want this song inside me. I want to cry and sweat with this. — Brian Lion, Co-Owner/Front Page Editor


“You are tiny and your lips are like little pieces of bacon. I can feel you on fire because you’re drunk and I seem too cool.”

I literally don’t know what the fuck this song is about but every time I listen to it, I always picture the cutest, most introverted and awkward pair of souls enjoying their own unique version of a relationship through each other’s quirks and perfect personalities. — Brian Lion, Co-Owner/Front Page Editor


When you love someone, it’s hard to peg down a single reason why they’re la creme de la creme. But if you give it some thought, it’s actually quite easy. It doesn’t matter where you are, where you’re going, or what’s behind you; when you’re in love, you’re happy just to be together. Devendra Banhart’s “Baby” describes just that with a woozy airiness perfect for waking up side-by-side, feeling the warmth from someone who makes you smile even when you’re silent. — Nina Corcoran, News & Review Writer


Love isn’t always easy, but it is surely real. A road not consistently straight, but one with road blocks, turns, curves, and lost direction, it is the journey to the destination that provides a spiritual bond. Heavens To Betsy’s “Complicated” perfectly captures this emotional decent into unification, understanding how hard the destruction of ones mental barriers can be. So hold your loved ones tight, and bask in the journey that has led your minds together. — Drew Caruso, News & Review Writer


Andy Hull is a genius, plain and simple. His storytelling abilities are impeccable and his Bad Books II contribution in “Pyotr” is hands down one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking love songs ever written. I won’t get carried away with explaining the song’s concept but if you’re interested, look it up, because it’s brilliant. I’ve listened to this song over 100 times since it released and it never gets old in the slightest. — Brian Lion, Co-owner/Front Page Editor


“I wish you could put your ear up to my heart and hear how much I love you,” sings Mineral vocalist Chris Simpson on what may be my personal favorite song of all time. I’ve never heard love described more perfectly and succinctly than it is in “Unfinished,” and while the song’s open-ended final lyric can be interpreted as a heartbreaking end to the relationship in question, it’s still the first thing that comes to mind when I think of love songs. — Troy Sennett, News & Review Writer


“Bloodstream” by Stateless is a song I feel represents the deeper side of love that keeps you intertwined with another person mind, body, and soul until you are stuck in a love so deep it affects every single last aspect of your life. This isn’t just a new love, it is a love that has either lasted a few years and you know everything about the person, or it is a love that hasn’t worked in the past but you keep revisiting because there is some unshakable connection with that person you just can’t keep them out of your life for good. They get into your bloodstream and the love and every other emotion that follows is what keeps you hooked. — Kellie Gannon, Photographer/News & Review Writer


I’m not a “love” song kind of person. When I think of songs that make me feel feels I think of “love then lost” or “pining after someone” jams. In high school I listened to a lot of punk, and one of my favorite bands for years was The Distillers. “Beat Your Heart Out” always reminds me of being in love as a teenager. Brody Dalle has a raspy, sexy voice and belts out the chorus to a fast paced beat. — Kriston McConnell, News Editor/News & Review Writer


There are a lot of songs about sex and falling in love, but few tackle the topic in ways as direct (or epic) as “Paradise By The Dashboard Light.” It’s a timeless rock song about two young people discovering each other’s bodies in a classic car and the ridiculous things they will say/do in pursuit of a physical connection with another person. That’s all well and good, but the story told within the song is not the reason I chose it for this feature. I chose this Meat Loaf classic because it’s one of the many reasons I fell in love with the girl I recently asked to marry me. The time we both realized we knew and loved this song was a special one, and to this day we often put it on for ridiculous sing-a-longs whenever the mood should strike.

TL;DR Girls who dig this song are the kind of girls you should marry. — James Shotwell, Founder/Editor

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMQzfncqOQc


Don’t let the heartless title fool you. Jenn Wasner’s lyrics in “I Hope You Die” can certainly be dissected and picked apart for interpretations aplenty, and I myself have decoded the cryptic message in two different ways, both of which are intensely beautiful in a Shakespearean sort of manner. — Brian Lion, Co-Owner/Front Page Editor


The things we love shape us, and I’d be quick to say you’re lying if pets aren’t included in that list o’ love. The Beatles are a band that have impacted everyone one way or another, and “Martha My Dear” is one of their songs that returns the love it gives, starting with the fact that Martha is the name of Paul McCartney’s sheepdog. Tell those you love how you feel whenever you get the chance, especially when the object of your affection is covered in fur and wags its tail to say hello. Okay, so the song’s lyrics may not be written about the dog itself, but that doesn’t mean I won’t sing them to mine and mean every word: “You have always been my inspiration, please be good to me. Martha my love, don’t forget me.” — Nina Corcoran, News & Review Writer


Since its 2002 debut, the lines “by the way your hands were shaking, rather waste some time with you” have resonated with me. While “Blue and Yellow” was originally a song about a close friendship, those lines transcend narrow investigation, and highlight some of the most rewarding aspects of spending time with a significant other. The wonders of the world can mean little sometimes, compared to an evening learning the night away with a loved one. — Drew Caruso, News & Review Writer


This song reminds you of the simplicity of love. The best moments together include doing nothing, laying in bed, holding each other. It’s about allowing life to slow down and focus on just you and the one you love, and how powerful such beautiful, simple moments together are. In the grand scheme of things, love is supposed to be easy and beautiful and isn’t about money, fancy dinners, or things… it’s about just you and the other person. “Come Back To Bed” is a stunning tune and a reminder that life is so short, stop and appreciate the true object of your affection while you have the time. — Kellie Gannon, Photographer, News & Review Writer


One of the best songs of all time (with a video to match) also happens to be one of my favorite love songs of all time. The almighty Dave Grohl explains, “That song’s about a girl that I’d fallen in love with and it was basically about being connected to someone so much, that not only do you love them physically and spiritually, but when you sing along with them you harmonize perfectly.” — Brian Lion, Co-owner/Front Page Editor

Kyle Florence

Kyle Florence is a proud Wisconsinite, a dinosaur enthusiast, and a lover of all things weird and whacky.
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